Conditionally Essential Nutrients in PD

Because of Your Diagnosis, You Need More

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Nutrition is the study of the human dependence on its environment. We cannot sustain ourselves; we must obtain a diverse blend of macro- and micro-nutrients from the Earth. We cannot synthesize our own oxygen, sulfur, iron, vitamin C, cobalt, etc., so we need to source it from outside ourselves (exogenous). Nutrients can be sources from a variety of places: oxygen from air, vitamin K from microbes in our gut, vitamin D from the sun. We are parasites of the planet.

Essential nutrients are those molecules and minerals that are necessary for human health but that we cannot produce. Some nutritional deficiencies cause dysfunction (low iodine impairs thyroid function) while others nutritional deficiencies can death (vitamin C deficiency causes people to bleed to death). There are a long list of vitamins (vit A, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, folate, vit C, D, E, etc.) and minerals (Na, K, Fe, Mg, Li, Ca, Cl, Mn, etc.) on this [ever-expanding] list of essential nutrients. More essential nutrients will be recognized over time.

Conditionally essential nutrients are those nutrients that are needed by some people, some of the time. A young, healthy person might be able to produce enough, but once you start aging and having intestinal inflammation and family stress and a few bad habits and a couple diagnoses, nutritional requirements change! The medical profession acknowledges that pregnant women need more folate and burn victims need more protein, and tobacco smokers need more vitamin C. With the exception of dopamine deficiency, little research has been done to describe the unique nutritional needs of the Parkinson community.

It my opinion that there are conditionally essential nutrients in some-to-most people with PD. In this course I'll describe how deficiencies of glutathione, dopamine, melatonin, lithium, vitamin C, omega-3 fatty acids, and coenzyme Q-10 can be identified and treated.

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Your Instructor

Laurie K Mischley, ND PhD MPH
Laurie K Mischley, ND PhD MPH

Laurie Mischley studied naturopathic medicine (ND) at Bastyr University and epidemiology (MPH) and nutritional sciences (PhD) at the University of Washington. Her work is focused on identifying the nutritional requirements unique to individuals with neurodegenerative diseases. She has published on coenzyme Q10, lithium, and glutathione deficiency in Parkinson’s Disease (PD).

For the past decade, she has been lead investigator of the Modifiable Variables in Parkinsonism (MVP) Study (, a global observational study designed to describe the secret(s) to success in a real-world population.

She has maintained a clinical practice in Seattle for over two decades, caring for thousands of patients with Parkinsonism.

Course Curriculum

  2022 Live Discussion Link
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  Intro: Conditionally Essential Nutrients
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  2021 Discussion
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Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
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